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In 1976, the number one hit on the Billboard chart was "Convoy," a novelty song by C.W. McCall about a convoy of truck drivers evading speed traps and toll booths across America. The song inspired the 1978 action film Convoy directed by Sam Peckinpah. After the film's release, thousands of independent truck drivers went on strike and participated in violent protests during the 1979 energy crisis (although similar strikes had occurred during the 1973 energy crisis).
Another film released in 1975, White Line Fever, also involved truck drivers. It tells the story of a Vietnam War veteran who returns home to take over his father's trucking business. But, he soon finds that corrupt shippers are trying to force him to carry illegal contraband.While endorsing another negative connotation towards the trucking industry, it does portray truck drivers with a certain wanderlust.
Trucks and cars have much in commonmechanicallyas well asancestrally.One link between them is the steam-powered fardier Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot, who built it in 1769. Unfortunately for him, steam trucks were notreallycommon until the mid 1800's. While looking at thispractically, it would be much harder to have a steam truck. This ismostlydue to the fact that the roads of the timewere builtfor horse and carriages. Steam truckswere leftto very short hauls, usually from a factory to the nearest railway station.In 1881, the first semi-trailer appeared, and it was in fact towed by a steam tractor manufactured by De Dion-Bouton.Steam-powered truckswere soldin France and in the United States,apparentlyuntil the eve of World War I. Also, at the beginning of World War II in the United Kingdom, theywere knownas 'steam wagons'.
The Federal Bridge Law handles relations between the gross weight of the truck, the number of axles, and the spacing between them. This is how they determine is the truck can be on the Interstate Highway system. Each state gets to decide themaximum, under the Federal Bridge Law. They determine by vehicle in combination with axle weight on state and local roads
Trailer stability can be defined as the tendency of a trailer to dissipate side-to-side motion. The initial motion may be caused by aerodynamic forces, such as from a cross wind or a passing vehicle. One common criterion for stability is the center of mass location with respect to the wheels, which can usually be detected by tongue weight. If the center of mass of the trailer is behind its wheels, therefore having a negative tongue weight, the trailer will likely be unstable. Another parameter which is less commonly a factor is the trailer moment of inertia. Even if the center of mass is forward of the wheels, a trailer with a long load, and thus large moment of inertia, may be unstable.